Helping You Get the Most Out of Your Misery






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Friday, February 18, 2005



As mid-life crises go, this is a fairly small and rather pathetic one.

When I was in my early twenties, having moved away from Ohio and trying to write, not worried about acting, not auditioning, not having to look a certain way for a certain part, I let my hair grow out. After about an eighteen month awkward growing stage, it got to a point I liked and I wore it down past my shoulders for a long while. It wasn't the most original hairstyle in the world, but it felt good to look a little different than I had the first twenty-two years or so of my life.

I got a part in a show about ten months after we'd moved to Seattle, so I had to cut it off. It's been, for the most part, relatively short ever since.

Now, after a couple years in New York; a couple years of not acting; a couple years of being poor enough that I can't afford a decent haircut very often, I find my hair in another awkward growing stage. I haven't had a haircut since early November and, when I got it cut that time, I had the guy leave some length on it; so it's relatively long right now.

I should pause here to say that I've got pretty thick hair. Not thick as in "lustrous and flowing", but thick as in "there's a whole lot of it and it doesn't like to do much of anything but sit there."

I've reached decision time. A friend told me the other night that I look like one of the Bee Gees. I need to cut it off or get it cut in a manner that will facilitate its growth. Because it can't stay like it is. I have kids at school telling me I look like Beau Bridges circa 1988. I look at myself in the mirror, with the back of my hair flipping up like Mary Tyler Moore on the Dick Van Dyke show, and I think, I've got to get rid of this shit. But then I have a maybe half-way decent hair day, such as on December 23rd, when I thought it looked vaguely good and I think, why do I need to cut it? Why should I care? Let it grow.

Because there is, remote as it may be, a chance that my hair could resolve itself into a Johnny Depp sort of "I'm living in the south of France and I don't give a shit about conforming to your rules" kind of look. The more likely outcome, though, would be more of a Comic Book Guy "Worst. Episode. Ever." sort of look and I don't want to be the guy who looks like he never got over his garage band from high school.

Or am I just being impatient? So blinded by the comparison to the less-successful of the Bridges brothers that I'm too scared to just let the hair happen and see where it takes me. It might be someplace magical, man. Magical.

The really sad part of all this is that I'm fucking thinking of it at all. I have, in the past few weeks, had fucking hair dreams. I have had dreams--frequently, I'm saying--where my hair was in different lengths and I woke up saying to myself, "Well, how do you feel about that length?"

Why can't I just want to buy a motorcycle like other guys in their mid-thirties?

Hair dreams? That's taking it a bit too far, Joe. Just remember: Nobody wants to look like a Bee Gee.
It appears that the more out of control ones hair is, the more cool you are. Obviously you have made the mistake of using a comb. Stop doing that and all will be well.

If I were to give a personal opinion, a guys hair (if he still able to grow it), should be at least long enough for a woman to run her fingers through.
I'm thinking we might have the same haircut.
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